The High Line is an example of the magnificent creativity
that is so prevalent in this city.
For years a section of the former elevated
New York Central Railroad Line
stood unused and in disrepair.
The city's desire to demolish it was countered by those who saw in it
a potential opportunity to preserve history and raise property value
by making it into a promenade.
Thus came about this marvelous pedestrian trail.
Even in the late winter weather it was bustling with sight seers.
The designers maintained the feeling of the railroad and in many places
the old rails are still visible along the sides.
Another fun part of the trail is all the great views of the city
one can enjoy along the way.
Here is a small ice skating rink seen from the path above.
There are many chairs, benches and recliners that allow pedestrians a moment of relaxation.
The landscape designers used all the native trees
and many of the grasses and plants
that had seeded themselves around the original track line.
Look closely and find a little dove resting by the rail.
Even little crocus are appearing through the gravel.
I loved how the rails seems to rise right up into the benches.
Abruptly the walkway ends and the old railroad line continues.
I got a kick out of this poster in a window we passed.
Obviously there are a few drawbacks to having your home
just humming with energy, creativity, productivity
and all kinds of wonderful people!
We began our day at Ground Zero in the heart of the city.
It is such a emotional place.
You begin by walking past the Fireman's Wall
which is a long raised plaque depicting
those brave men and women
who were first to arrive on that terrible day.
It actually is the wall of the fire station itself
so we got to walk past the trucks that were part of the First Response Team.
Then after careful screening we were allowed into the area
where the Memorials are,
and where all the construction is going on to build the new towers.
The actual footprints of the twin towers are now two endless waterfalls.
The water leaves the sides in individual streams and flows
down the walls and into a "bottomless" hole.
The families of the victims had a great deal of influence
upon the design of the memorial.
For instance the only names on the grounds
are the names of those who perished that day.
Even those who were part of the rescue
or paid for the memorial's construction
are not acknowledged anywhere.
All the victim's names are etched on the horizontal panels
on the walls of the memorial.
It's a very, very haunting place to me, and even more so
becasue it felt like watching the towers and all the people falling down
over and over again,
no stop to their suffering, almost an endless flow of despair,
all disappearing into oblivion.
It was beautiful but extremely sad.
If this is what the families hoped for, they achieved it.
There are five new towers under construction
the tallest is 1,776 feet high and reflects
the Washington Monument in its angles,
all very symbolic and quite amazing.
This tree is called "The Survival Tree" for very good reasons.
They found it all crushed on one side by debris from the towers,
but still alive.
It had two saplings which they moved, one to Washington DC
and another in some safe place in case anything should happen to this guy.
It has been carefully moved and placed between the two memorials.
Here it is again, with one of the new towers rising behind it.
Ground Zero is a sobering, sad, memorial to tragic destruction
and meaningless death;
A terrible part of our world's history.
There was a great feeling of reverence everywhere.
As it should be.
Our children's world will never know what it felt like